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My First Record

Wednesday, 2nd April 2014

Russ Andrews customer Rob Burn wrote in to tell us about the first album he bought: "1966... Summer... me, 15 years old: school's over forever. Hoorah! There's five weeks holiday to look forward to before I go on to college in the Autumn. My first purchase, music-wise with my own money, is Eleanor Rigby on 45 RPM vinyl by the Beatles.
RevolverMy first purchase, music-wise with my own money, is Eleanor Rigby on 45 RPM vinyl by the Beatles. I digress, however. To obtain my first album entails a circuitous route. Namely: gardening (how I loathe it!) Anyway, after some hard graft and blisters I receive enough pocket money to buy Revolver... the new Beatles album for '66!
Hindsight is such as wonderful thing, sometimes... 12" of pristine black vinyl, mono (of course). With a startling black and white ink drawing and collage cover.
I get home and can't get the record out of the dust jacket quick enough. Placed onto the old Dansette record player: 2 watts of valve power! Want more bass? Close the lid! Place the stylus on the record: "clunk". Count in... coff! leads into Taxman first track. Mesmerised. Wow, what is this? Goosebumps... no more Love Me Do, this is something else.
I can't get enough of this and the album is constantly turned over and over to bathe in the wonder of this gorgeous creation. What a summer. Thanks: John, Paul, George and Ringo!
Because of frequency of play, my mono copy was replaced with a stereo one. This was not as good because of hard left/ right placement and the automatic double tracking (ADT) mixing was poor.
I subsequently bought this album on CD when it came out (stereo same mix); no mono available... sigh.
Revolver was purchased again when all the Beatles albums were remastered from the original master tapes in 2010. I bought the mono box set (and the stereo ones!)
This album still, after all these years, gives me the feeling that it's a new world and possibilities are endless. The joy and excitement that comes across is still astonishing. I can now hear on CD interesting bass lines and melodies to die for: a one note hypnotic bass line on Tomorrow Never Knows, John's enunciation of Mr Heath on Taxman in the chorus.
My preference for mono or stereo is a hard choice as there are slightly different mixes... mono for overall sound but stereo mixes for little things that are missed from the mono mix... ahh... sigh!
I think the remastered stereo version on CD is much better than the original vinyl as hard left/ right and ADT have been more or less corrected. Especially on Eleanor Rigby. Thank you.
If I was on a desert island and could only have one Beatles album, Revolver would be the one I would have. You've just been reading the scribbles of a Beatle Person, so I'm biased. No apologies.
Beatle Person number 138520 (AKA Rob Burn).
PS: It's all about the music. Sort your system out the RA way and enjoy."


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